" A camp (was set up) in one place in Amor. They
desolated its people, and its land was like that which has never come
into being. They were coming, while the flame was prepared before them,
forward towards Egypt. Their confederation was the PELESET, THEKER
(Tjekker), DENYE(n) and the WESHESH, lands united."
(The Sea peoples and Egypt: Alessandra Nibbi p. 65)
One other name is also associated with the Sea Peoples
of the North, the SHEKELESH.
It is universally agreed that the Peleset can be
identified with the Philistines and last week we proposed that the
Denyen were in fact the tribe of Dan for obvious reasons. To complete
the thesis we must convincingly identify the Theker and the Weshesh, a
task that has confounded ALL scholars and Egyptologists until this day.
We will start with the tale of Wenamun who was an elder
in the Temple of Amun probably at the time of the Pharaoh Smendes of the
XXIst Dynasty. He was sent to obtain timber and it is here we meet the
only other reference to the Tjekker in the Egyptian annals.
" And I arrived at Dor, a Tjekker-town, and Beder its
Prince caused to be brought to me 50 loaves..............". (Egypt
of the Pharaohs: Sir Alan Gardiner p. 307)
As we can see from the map Dor was located on the Western boundary of
Manasseh and the Northern Boundary of Dan.
The name of the ruler of the Tjekker. Beder is also
interesting in that it is unique in Egyptian records and coincidentally
unique in the Biblical account also. A Bezer was a son of Liph, one of
the heads of the Tribe of Asher.
There is no evidence that Manasseh was ever connected to
the sea so it is not surprising that the Asherites might have controlled
the commerce of that city perhaps together with the families of Dan.
We now come full circle because although the tribe of
Asher did not drive out the inhabitants of Acco (Judges 1.31) it had
been allotted to them and it is perfectly possible to read the name
Tjekker as people from the location of Acco.
It is interesting to view the map of Solomon's districts to see how the
original tribal divisions had been modified from the initial allocation
of the land to the time in which we are dealing.
We must now tackle the problem that has baffled all
scholars since the first translations of the relevant texts at Medinet
Habu. The identification of the Weshesh.
Not only is there absolutely nothing in any book on the
subject, I recently asked every expert in the field worldwide to come up
with anything, anything at all on the puzzle. No answer from anyone.
Why? Because they are all looking at the Aegean for their answers
because of the conventional chronology.
If we look to the shores of Israel just after Solomon's
rule, it becomes quite clear.
The suffix esh is merely the Hebrew aish. So we have man
or men of "W". But there is no "W" in the Egyptian hieroglyphics of this
word, it has been written Weshesh for convenience. It would better have
been written Ueshesh or Uashesh.
" And the sons of Asher , Imnah and Ishvah and Ishvi"
( Genesis 46:17)
So you can take your choice Ueshesh the men of Asher or
Ishvah or Ishvi.
And we can now even see how these people looked as we
previewed last week.
You will not be surprised (although the professional
Egyptologists were) to find that unlike the enemies of the Egyptians to
the west who were not circumcised (the Egyptians cut off the foreskins
of their vanquished as a "head" count) the enemies known as the Sea
Peoples WERE circumcised. We now know why.
Further look at the side locks of hair. Do they not
remind you of modern orthodox Jews and the commandment to the children
of Israel to let their locks grow long.
From left to right
1) a Prince of (ht)
2) a Prince of (imr)
3) a chieftain of (tkry) the Tjekker
4) srdn of the Sea
5) chieftain of the (s)
6) (trs) of the Sea
The figure of the Pelseset (p) is missing. ( The Ancient
Near East in Pictures: James B. Pritchard p. 250)
Only the Shekelesh now need to be identified. The men of
Shekel or Sheker (l and r are interchangeable). It is not a great
stretch of the imagination (much less imagination than was needed to fit
the names into obscure Aegean communities) to see that they were from
the tribe of Issachar.
Next week we will see how it defies logic the way the
Philistines have been characterized by those adhering to the
conventional chronology who maintain that this is the first time they
appear in the area (contrary to the Biblical account). They would have
you believe that this sea-faring people with all of the Mediterranean to
choose from, chose a sanctuary which is the ONLY stretch of coast that
does NOT have a natural port.
Michael S. Sanders
June 23rd 1998